Ahmad al Jarba
President of the Syrian Coalition
June 18 2014
It is far too late to issue any more warnings; disaster has now struck, and the threats of which we’ve repeatedly warned the world are now a nightmarish reality threatening the entire region with implications to world security and peace.
In the past, I warned the world that Syria will become a place from where terrorist acts will be planned and launched against countries around the world. Our cries were heard, however, no serious action was taken to combat these new threats of terrorism.
Let me be frank; the bloodbath that started in Syria is spreading to Iraq and unfortunately, this is just the tip of the iceberg. Let me be honest; some leaders believed they could use terrorists as hired mercenaries but suddenly found themselves stuck with terrorists who used the opportunity to advance their own interests and agenda.
Violence does, in truth, recoil upon the violent, and the schemer falls into the pit which he digs for another. However, I want to remind you all that trading Syrian blood and playing with fire will torch the whole region. So I ask, what are you waiting for? Are we going to wait until the Islamic State in Iraq and al Sham (ISIS) establishes its emirate state in two countries violating their sovereignty and sanctity? Are we going to wait until Hezbollah militias arrive in Iraq to carry on spreading their sectarian hatred? Are we going to wait for a new country to witness a new massacre?
It is time for action. Condemnation is not enough anymore. We have many statements by all countries and international organizations, but have only seen death and destruction in Syria.
This is also a cry of anger at Arab and Islamic states who do not realize the difference between the killer and the victim. In fact, some countries still insolently support the aggressors in the name of resistance and other banal slogans.
Let me be frank and ask the following question: How can hundreds or even thousands of ISIS members capture large areas in Iraq?
ISIS, with atrocities that has taken the world aback, is not a monster from a different world. It is the result of years of political, social, and security depravity. ISIS was formed in the Middle East, and those who created it, knowingly or not, are sitting here today pretending to fight it.
I also ask: did anyone else, other than Iraqi citizens, fight the terrorism that swept Iraq? Despite having the weapons, the money, and the planes, didn’t the Iraqi government fail to control its borders and prevent the transfer of terrorism from Iraq to Syria and vice versa? Didn’t more than 2000 extremists escape Abu Graib and Taji prisons more than a year ago? Didn’t around 3000 prisoners escape the Mosul prison 10 days ago, and most of them went to Syria?
It is a historical first that the Syrian people were forced to fight the Assad regime, Hezbollah militias, Assaib Ahl al Haq militias from Iraq, and ISIS, all at the same time? All without direct or indirect international intervention, with exception to the assistance of our sisterly countries; in particular the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and we are grateful to them.
As I stand here before you, the heroes of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and the Arab tribes in Deir Ezzor are fighting ISIS terrorists. They have fought for 4 months, and it their steadfastness that prevents the establishment of a terrorist state stretching from Mosul in Iraq to Raqqa in Syria.
I would like to remind those who promised us assistance and didn’t follow through is a push for terrorists to win. And I ask here: Will there be a strike against ISIS in Iraq to push ISIS back into Syria? Will sectarian militias be left to do evil in Iraq and Syria? Will dealing with ISIS be an arbitrary process as per usual, or it will be based on a strategic plan to rid us of this cancer called ISIS?
Finally, let us be realists and face the facts on the ground together. We cannot remain silent about ISIS’s activities in Iraq and Syria. It is shameful to cut off an arm of a sinister octopus and leave the head intact to continue to move the rest of its evil arms.